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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

The Edit view

In the Edit view you can perform basic image-editing operations which include adjusting brightness and contrast, cropping, rotating, red-eye reduction, and converting an image from color to black-and-white. The following pages explain how to use each of the tools available.

Figure 17.27Edit tools

View a photo for editing

Select a photo, then click the "Edit" view button (beneath the viewing area). Two things happen:

  • The selected photo fills the entire viewing area.

  • The lower pane displays iPhoto's editing tools.

To choose the previous or next photo in the collection without leaving Edit view, click the "Previous" or "Next" buttons in the bottom-right.

Undo editing changes

As you make the changes described on the following pages, you can use the Undocommand (Command Z, or "Undo" from the Edit menu) to undo your steps, one at a time.

Once you quit iPhoto, you cannot use Command Z to undo any changes you made last time you used iPhoto. But you can go to the File menu and choose "Revert to Original" and the original photo will magically reappear.

Create a duplicate photo before you do anything drastic

When you drag a photo from the Library into an Album, iPhoto doesn't make a separate copy of that photo—it puts a "link" from the Album to the original photo that's still stored in the Library. This prevents your hard disk from getting full of multiple copies of the same photo.

So when you edit a photo, you not only affect its appearance in the Photo Library but in all other Albums in which that photo appears. To avoid changing the photo's appearance in every instance, create a duplicate of the photo and edit the duplicate.

  1. Select a photo in the Photo Library or in an Album. If you duplicate a photo in an Album, it will appear in both the Album and the Library; any changes you make will apply to both duplicates (since they're

  2. From the File menu, choose "Duplicate," or press Command D.

  3. Rename the duplicate photo: select it, then enter a new name in the Title field of the Information section (click the "Info" button beneath the Album pane to show the Title field, as shown below).

  4. Edit the duplicate photo.


    It's possible to duplicate an entire Album (select the Album name, then press Command D), but any editing changes you make to photos in the duplicate Album will apply to the original photos!

    Figure 17.28Edit tools

Crop an image

The Crop tool lets you select the most important part of a picture and delete the rest of it. Thoughtful cropping makes your photos stronger and more visually interesting.

Figure 17.29Cropping this photo brings more attention to Booda's warm eyes.

  1. Select a photo.

  2. Click the "Edit" view button.

  3. Select an option (explained below) from the Constrain pop-up menu, which is on the left side of the Edit pane.

    The Constrain menu gives you common proportion ratios to apply to the Crop tool. Choose "None" if you want no restraints on your cropping. Choose one of the other options to limit your cropping area to a specific ratio. For instance, if you plan to use the photo in an iPhoto book, select the "4 x 3 (Book, DVD)" option.

  4. Position the pointer at one corner of the desired cropping area, then press-and-drag diagonally to select a cropping area.

    To move the crop selection, press inside the rectangular cropping area and drag.

    To resize the crop selection, position the tip of the pointer in any corner of the cropping selection; when the pointer changes to a "pointing finger," press-and-drag the selection to the desired size.

  5. click the "Crop" button.

Figure 17.30

Rotate an image

You can rotate a photo from any view mode except "Share." Just select a photo and click the "Rotate" tool to rotate the image 90 degrees, counterclockwise (if that's what you chose in Preferences, page 275). Additional clicks will continue to rotate the image in 90 degree increments.

Figure 17.31This is the Rotate tool.

Option-click the Rotate tool to rotate the photo in a clockwise direction (or opposite of the direction chosen in Preferences).

Reduce red-eye

Use the Red-Eye tool to eliminate or reduce the red glare in a subject's eyes when taking flash photos. The results may vary with different photos.

  1. Select a photo that needs red-eye reduction.

  2. Click the "Edit" view button (if you're not already there).

  3. In the Edit pane, choose "None" from the Constrain menu so you will be able to draw freely.

  4. Press-and-drag a selection around the area of one eye. Select as small an area as possible. If necessary, zoom in on the photo before making your selection: drag the Size control toward the right.

  5. Single-click the Red-Eye tool. iPhoto will remove all red from the selected area. Repeat for the other eye.

If you're not satisfied with the results, press Command Z (Undo) one step at a time, or from the File menu, choose "Revert to Original."

Figure 17.32Selected area.

Convert a photo to black & white

To convert a photo to black and white, select it and click the Edit button. In the Edit pane click the "Black & White" button.

Remember, this will affect how this photo looks wherever it appears in iPhoto. If you don't want to affect other occurrences, make a duplicate of the photo, rename it, and convert the duplicate to black and white.

Adjust the brightness and/or contrast

When a photo is a little too dark or too light, you can adjust the brightness and contrast. It's an easy way to juice up a flat photo.

To adjust the brightness and/or contrast, select a photo while in Edit view. Drag the "Brightness/Contrast" sliders left and right until you like the results.

Figure 17.33The settings for this photo have not been altered.

Figure 17.34In this photo, I decreased the brightness (moved the Brightness slider to the left) and increased the contrast (moved the Contrast slider to the right). Even photos that don't need brightness and contrast adjustments can be manipulated to create different and unusual effects.

Open photos directly into another image-editing application

iPhoto's editing tools are fairly limited. For additional image editing, you might want to open a photo in another program, such as Adobe Photoshop (for professionals) or Adobe Photoshop Elements (for home users).

  1. From the iPhoto menu, choose "Preferences...."

  2. In the Preferences window, find "Double-clicking photos opens them in." Click the "Other" button, as circled below.

  3. Click the "Set..." button to get an "Open" dialog box. Find and select the application you want to use for more advanced image editing. Click "Open" (bottom-right corner).

    Figure 17.35Click the "Other" button, then click "Set..." so you can choose another application.

  4. Close the Preferences window. application you selected.

  5. Double-click on a photo. iPhoto will open the photo in the image-editing application you selected.

Edit a photo in a separate window

You can choose to edit a photo in its own, separate window rather than in the iPhoto window. This lets you customize the window Toolbar to display the tools you use most.

To open a photo in a separate window, hold down the Option key and doubleclick a photo.

Figure 17.36This separate window lets you edit the photo without losing the entire window view of thumbnails. You can open a number of separate windowsÑjust Option - double-click on any number of thumbnails.


If you want photos to open into individual windows every time you double-click, choose that option in the Preferences; see page 275.

Figure 17.37Just like in your Finder window Toolbar, you can:
Drag toolbar items sideways to rearrange them.
Command-drag items off the toolbar.
Click the Hide/Show button in the upper-right to hide or show the toolbar.
Change how the buttons are displayed (use the Show menu).

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